Journal/Features

Crumbs’ ultimate 12 wines of Christmas guide

by Ben Franks - Novel WInes

13 November 2017

Treat yourself to something a little bit special this Christmas...

We’ve teamed up with Novel Wines wine writer Ben Franks to pick the 12 must-try wines for the Christmas holidays.

Novel Wines are specialists in showcasing the finest unique and wonderful wines you can buy in the UK. Whether you’re looking for the perfect gift for your wine-loving friends or the tastiest tipple for Christmas, here are Bens’ all-time top festive treats:

1. Drink English: Aldwick Jubilate Rosé

Every Christmas deserves to be kicked-off with a bottle of delicious sparkling wine. Local family-run estate Aldwick Court Farm & Vineyard have done wonders with this fruit-led rosé sparkling wine. It’s bursting with fresh strawberries and ripe summer fruits with subtle aromas of toasty brioche and a mousse as creamy as the finest Champagnes. Cork it as an aperitif and toast your best Christmas yet.

£27.95 (75cl) Vegan | Buy it from novelwines.co.uk

2. Roast turkey: Kardos Supreme Tokaj

Made by one of Hungary’s best winemakers, Gabor Kardos. Kardos’ Supreme blend of Furmint and Harslevelu is a richly flavoured white wine fitting for your Christmas turkey dinner. Originating from the volcanic soils of Tokaj, the Supreme is packed with notes of red apple, fresh grapefruit and a buttery texture with a long, mouth-watering finish.

£16.95 (75cl) Veggie | Buy it from novelwines.co.uk

3. Veggie pie: Chateau Ksara Blanc de Blancs

Brilliantly weird and wonderful, the Blanc des Blancs blend is made up of Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Semillon, created by Lebanon’s oldest winery Chateau Ksara. Unique aromas of hazelnuts and exotic fruit lead into a palate of elegantly-balanced spice, pineapple, nuts and soft vanilla.

 

£13.95 (75cl) Vegan | Buy it from novelwines.co.uk

4. Festive salt-baked fish: Grace Koshu Kayagatake

Our all-time best-selling white wine from outstanding winemaker Ayana Misawa at Grace, Japan; a classy white made from 100% Koshu in the foothills of Yamanashi Provence. The wine’s delicate notes of lemon and grapefruit make it my top choice with sushi or salt-baked salmon. An absolute must-try for any pescatarian.

£18.50 (75cl) Vegan | Buy it from novelwines.co.uk

5. Juicy lamb: Kayra Kalecik Karasi

Turkey’s answer to Pinot Noir! Beautifully earthy red wine made from 100% Kalecik Karasi, a variety native to Anatolia, hand-picked from Kayra’s leading Danizli vineyards bordering Greece. Medium bodied with plummy fruit and ginger flower aromas, the mouth is a balanced array of cherry, plum, leather and silky tannins. It was made to match with lamb.

£14.95 (75cl) Vegan | Buy it from novelwines.co.uk

6. Tender top-side beef: Budureasca Feteasca Neagra

It’s so tempting to pick a full bodied, gutsy Shiraz with beef, but none come close to Budureasca’s premium 100% Feteasca Neagra. This deeply coloured Romanian red wine has soft tannins and a mixture of dark berries and spice. The grapes have been harvested from mature, 30-year-old vines, giving vast characterful flavour to the end wine and will warm you up like a blazing fire on a cool Christmas dinner time.

£11.95 (75cl) Veggie | Buy it from novelwines.co.uk

7. Party canapés: Istenic No. 1 Cuvée

Slovenia’s flagship fizz from producer Istenic, made in the same traditional method as Champagne, is perfect with canapés. It’s silky-smooth, creamy and fruit-led with hints of white peach, summer berries and brioche. Serve well-chilled and start the Christmas party!

£25.00 (75cl) Veggie | Buy it from novelwines.co.uk

8. Drink pink: Dunleavy English Rosé

One of the most in-demand rosés ever produced in England, this light and fresh Pinot Noir blend reminds me of summer strawberry, red cherry and honeydew melon with a delicate, creamy finish. It’s made by Bristol-based mum Ingrid Bates and is a delightful match with Chinese cuisine or as a gift for any rosé lover in the family.

£13.95 (75cl) Vegan | Buy it from novelwines.co.uk

9. For the Champagne lover: Furleigh Estate Rosé Brut

My all-time favourite English sparkling wine comes from Rebecca and Ian at Furleigh Estate, just off the Jurassic Coast in Dorset. It’s the finest fizz to surprise any Champagne lover. A vintage style made from the classic noble grapes Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Meunier with 3 years on its lees and now 7 years maturation. Fruity notes of fresh strawberry are balanced by biscuit and cream notes with a long, indulgent finish.

£32.00 (75cl) Vegan | Buy it from novelwines.co.uk

10. For the curry fan: Sula Dindori Reserve Shiraz

Something truly very different: Indian red wine. In 1998, multi-award-winning winemaker Kerry Damskey from Sonoma County, California, teamed up with Indian entrepreneur Rajeev Samant to create wines to pair with Indian cuisine. Today, their red 100% Shiraz from the single Nashik vineyard Dindori Estate is the best curry-partner wine I’ve ever tasted. Smoky and jammy, this red can stand up to a spicy Jalfrezi as well as a mild biryani. A must-try for anyone who loves a good curry.

£12.95 (75cl) Vegan | Buy it from novelwines.co.uk

11.For the sweet tooth: Quady’s Starboard 2006

Quady’s port-style fortified wine from California is a very special buy. Made with Portugal’s Tinta Cao and Touriga Nacional grapes, but grown in the warm climate of the Californian sun, this extra fruity vintage port is unique. Hailing from the top 2006 vintage, it’s mature, firm and tannic but balanced by brooding dark fruit, prunes, black cherries and vanilla. Whether you choose to buy it for your sweet-tooth friend or enjoy it now with a cheese board, Quady’s Starboard will happily mature for another 10 years – if you have the patience to lay it down!

£36.00 (75cl) Veggie | Buy it from novelwines.co.uk

12. Something rare: Pannon Dominium Azsu 6 Puttonyos 2006

Tokaj, for centuries, has produced the world’s finest dessert wines. Few more so than Pannon’s Dominium Aszu 6 Puttonyos from the ’06 vintage. Decadently sweet and pure luxury to savour, this style is a glorious adventure of apricot, peach and orange peel laced with honey and hints of toasted chestnuts. Ideally sipped at 12C with cheese or a sticky toffee pudding. Aszu 6 Puttonyos is said as “Ah-soo six poot-on-yosh”.

£36.00 (50cl) Veggie | Buy it from novelwines.co.uk

View the full range online at novelwines.co.uk

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